ALLERGIES an overview - dogs
This section should be used in conjunction with the Skin Problems section. It might also be useful to consult the Urinary Tract Infections and Digestive Disorders sections of this site.
Although dogs with allergies can have the humanlike symptoms of a runny nose or watery eyes, they more often react to the allergen through their skin. Because of this, many skin and ear problems can be linked to allergies and the source of the allergy can be hard to uncover. To make things more difficult, skin issues often do not resolve quickly, even when you are doing all the right things. Therefore a systematic approach is called for - along with a lot of patience.
Too often pet caregivers and veterinarians fall back on the standard treatment with corticosteroids. These drugs may provide temporary relief for your dog but do nothing to remedy the underlying condition. In addition, these drugs, if used long term, may cause liver damage and bone loss.
In a large number of cases, skin and ear problems are purely nutritional and are not associated with allergies. By adding the correct supplements, the problems are resolved. Because this often remedies the problem, it is a good idea to start there by following the guidelines in the Skin Problems section. It usually takes one or more months to see results.
If the information you find there does not resolve your dog's skin issues, the next step is to rule out allergies.
Most Common Allergies That Affect Dogs
Identifying the allergy can be a challenge, but it is certainly worth the effort to try. The 3-Step Wellness Plan will help you identify and deal with your pet's allergies.